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Pathfinder Exploration Community

Updated: Jun 29

Pathfinder Exploration Community addresses the challenge of disseminating valuable knowledge and experiences within the GIS industry. "Pathfinders" is a podcast that illuminates the incredible world of GIS professionals who map our world, chart a path and inspire journeys. This podcast showcases how our industry has evolved from the maproom to the boardroom, emphasizing the critical role GIS plays in addressing today's challenges.

What is a Pathfinder?

A Pathfinder is someone who has made an impact in their community. Many professionals in this field have unique stories and expertise, but these insights often remain untapped. The GIS industry is vast and diverse, and we aim to solve the problem of isolating valuable insights within this dynamic field. We aim to highlight the everyday GIS hero, not necessarily those with the most accolades or wealth, but those who drive innovation, think differently, and contribute to the community's growth. We recognize the need to bridge the gap between these experts and those eager to learn from them.

Why GIS?

As GIS professionals, we are innovators poised to tackle future challenges with modern solutions. "Pathfinders" encourages us to grow, connect, and learn from one another, pushing the boundaries of our field. It highlights how GIS is central to modernizing cities, managing communities, and advocating for natural systems' protection.

"Pathfinders" shares the inspiring stories of GIS leaders, fostering a stronger community through shared experiences and insights. It's about education, investment in the next generation of GIS professionals, and building a resilient future together.

We believe that personal connections and real-life experiences are essential for professional growth, and we wanted to provide a space for this exchange. By sharing stories and experiences, we promote a sense of belonging and collaboration within the geo community. We want to ensure that no one feels isolated, and everyone can benefit from the collective wisdom of this industry.

What are the seven questions in the podcast?

1. Describe in your own words what GIS is and its value to your organization.

2. What is your educational background, and how did it lead you to GIS?

3. Why are you passionate about GIS?

4. What achievements or initiatives have you undertaken to strengthen the GIS community?

5. What perseverance have you shown to overcome difficult times?

6. How has your work in GIS humbled you?

7. How can people contact you and learn more about your work?

We believe these seven questions foster a meaningful dialogue that benefits the GIS community.

What we believe

Our Vision is simple: Charting a path & inspiring your journey.​

Our Mission is to provide a unique professional growth platform to share and amplify the diverse and unique career stories of and lessons learned from everyday professionals. This is a community made up of leaders and we:

  • Build and maintain thought communities

  • Bring great stories to a deserving audience

  • Recognize passionate people and good work

  • Preserve and provide valuable knowledge and experience

Our Values are always top of mind and always in ‘check.’ From our founders to our platform and from our platform to our Pathfinders.

  • Credibility First: Prioritizing credibility by establishing a solid foundation of knowledge, expertise, and trustworthiness in all endeavors. Ensuring your actions and words reflect a commitment to reliability and integrity.

  • Humility Always: Maintaining humility as a constant attitude, embracing continuous growth, and remaining open to learning from others. Acknowledging mistakes and being receptive to diverse perspectives.

  • Excellence a Given: Striving for excellence as the default standard in every task and interaction. Consistently delivering high-quality work and setting a benchmark for others to follow.

  • Curiosity Unleashed: Fostering a relentless curiosity, always seeking new knowledge, insights, and opportunities for innovation. Encouraging a mindset of exploration and discovery.

  • Kindness as a Cornerstone: Treating others with kindness, compassion, and empathy. Creating a welcoming and inclusive environment where everyone feels valued and supported.

What is our history?

Our journey began with a realization during the COVID-19 pandemic when the Regional Municipality of York won the 2020 Esri Presidents Award. Jack Dangermond asked the leadership team, of which Jeff Lamb was a part of, to carry on advocating for change in the industry. Pathfinders is how Jeff chose to turn that request into action.

Why is there a sloth?

I mean, why not?! Sloths are awesome. Our sloth is named Samson. Samson sits around all day binge listening to the show at 0.025 speed. We look forward to hearing his feedback on the first episode sometime later in 2025. Drop Samson a note and he will get back to you... faster than you think!

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